Kansas Wesleyan women’s basketball coach Ryan Showman mentioned that this year’s non-conference schedule is littered with statement games.
The squad just picked one up.
Senior transfer Kayla Kivinski poured in 21 points, the defense locked up in the second half, and the Kansas Wesleyan Coyotes rang in the new year inside Mabee Arena with an 83-76 upset over No. 13 Hastings.
KWU started slowly, falling by 13-2 with the lone basket coming at the 7:41 mark in the first quarter. After trailing 20-7, senior Maddie Miller sparked a run, scoring seven of her nine points in the opening frame, pulling the Coyotes to 22-17 after one.
Kansas Wesleyan tied up the game at the 8:15 juncture of the first half at 22-all, but Hastings pulled away for its second 13-point lead. The Coyotes closed the gap to 45-38 at the break after an 8-2 spurt.
The Coyotes would use that momentum to knot up the score at 55 apiece with 1:40 to go in the third, but ultimately stayed behind 60-58 going into the final period.
KWU’s defense stepped up in the fourth quarter, allowing Kansas Wesleyan to lock up the score at 65-all with 6:58 to play in the game. Kivinski came alive and finished off the game from there, scoring 14 points in the last quarter. Sophomore Virja Lewis ended up with 13 points and nine rebounds, hauling in five offensive boards. KWU outrebounded Hastings 52 to 32, 23 coming on the offensive glass. Senior Haleigh Bradford chipped in 10 points and recorded two blocks for a defense that held Hastings to 33 percent from the floor in the second half.
Kansas Wesleyan (2-1) heads to Southern Nazarene on Friday.